Bargaineering is a blog that chronicles my personal finance life and where I discuss matters of shopping, insurance, investing, retirement, loans, credit cards, mortgages, bargain hunting and other issues in my life.

Latest Posts from Bargaineering (page 251)

Credit Report Bumpage: Knocking Off Hard Inquiries

Before I started spending most of my time writing for, I spent many of my formative years at Fatwallet (as far back as 2001!). One of the big ideas in the Finance forums was the App-O-Rama, where you applied for a lot of credit cards in a short period of time (on the order of just a few days). […]

PocketSmith Calendar Budgeting Tool

This post is a continuation of a series of reviews I’m doing for popular budgeting packages after our recent Personal Finance Hour episode on budgeting. […]

2010 Roth IRA Conversion Rules

A year ago, when I met with my accountant, we spent some time talking about our retirement, our goals, and how we were going to reach them. In looking at our retirement accounts, I saw that the vast majority of our savings were in tax-deferred accounts like 401(k)s and Rollover IRAs. […]

Online Banks Are Healthy, Growing, & 100% Safe

So far, 145 banks and thrifts have been closed by regulators since the start of the credit crisis in 2008. One hundred a forty five. Every Friday, when the FDIC usually announces closures, for the last two years, we’ve expected at least one bank to fail… sometimes two. Last week, five banks failed, bringing the 2009 total to 120. […]

How to Sue Debt Collectors

Now that you are aware of what happens when debt collectors violate the FDCPA and you have some recorded phone calls, credit reporting violations, and false or misleading statements by a collector, what do you do then? You sue them. Nothing gets a company’s attention like slapping them with a lawsuit. […]

Free Online Budgeting & Planning Software Tools

With the unceremonious shuttering of Microsoft Money a few months ago, a lot of former Microsoft Money customers are looking for alternatives. If you were using Microsoft Money Essentials, Plus Deluxe, Plus Premium, or Plus Home & Business, your software will still work but support will be gone. Fortunately, there are a lot of alternatives in the online budgeting tool chest. […]

Crest Whitestrips Advance Seals Giveaway

For a month or so before our wedding, my wife and I used Crest Whitestrips to help whiten our teeth. We thought about doing one of those “professional” dentist teeth whitening sessions but between the cost and the discomfort (my wife has sensitive teeth and her dentist said these were just as good… and cheaper!), we opted for a do-it-yourself kit because we figured it was a good value. […]

pfPicks: We’re Almost to 2010!

Whew, the end of yet another week. Can you believe it’s already November? It seemed like only yesterday I was trying to figure out what to get my wife for Valentine’s Day and already we’re planning for Thanksgiving in a few short weeks. […]

Homebuyer Credit & Jobless Benefits Extended (H.R.3548)

In the last few months, there have been two big “stimulus” related items discussed in the House and Senate. The first was talk of extending the first time homebuyer credit in both time (when you could use it) and scope (who qualified). The second was about extending unemployment benefits by an additional 13 weeks. […]

Your Take: Will Your Recession Changes Stick?

While most of us don’t believe we’re out of the recession, no matter what the statistics say, we can all agree that we made a few sacrifices over the last year and a half. Some have made a lot of sacrifices. One of the things my wife and I cut back on was dining out. We would go out to restaurants several times a week, not counting weekend festivities with our friends. […]